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First Hispanic Emmys to Be Awarded in June

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NEW YORK ( -- In signs of the ever-growing popularity of Latin entertainment, organizers are working on the first Emmys en Espanol, a hopeful entrepreneur is shopping around Latin Hip Hop Awards, and general-market events companies are seeking multicultural opportunities for clients.
The first Hispanic Emmys will be awarded in June.

Kay Madati, BMW's multicultural marketing manager, has just joined Octagon Worldwide, Interpublic Group of Cos.' sports, events and entertainment marketing company, as the company's first director of multicultural marketing.

'Low-hanging fruit'
"Hispanics and African-Americans index very high for entertainment," he said. "The low-hanging fruit is Hispanic."

Mr. Madati said he is planning a Hispanic entertainment project with Nextel and working with BMW and Bank of America, and will hire two people to work on Hispanic and African-American projects.

"I'm not just an internal consultant guy. I want to build a credible multicultural marketing division," he said.

Emmys en Espanol
After several years of struggling to start Emmys en Espanol, the first awards for Spanish-language TV will be given out in June. For the first year, the event won't be televised and only six or seven achievement awards will be handed out rather than honoring specific programs or performances, said Raul Mateu, a senior vice president at the William Morris Agency and chairman of the Emmys en Espanol organizing committee. The event has been attracting notice, though, because the judges are drawn from leading Hispanic marketers, agencies and media, including Gilbert Davila, vice president for multicultural marketing at Walt Disney Co.

Tough sell for Latin hip-hop show
The most embryonic effort is the Latin Hip Hop Awards, which entertainment attorney David Garcia Jr. concedes is a tough sell. The music is Latin but his awards show would be in English, making it unsuitable for Spanish-language TV. And when he talks to advertisers about sponsoring the awards, he gets shuffled between general market executives and their Hispanic counterparts. Plus, his hip-hop artists such as Akwid and Daddy Yankee are not household names. Although Mr. Garcia has no sponsors, broadcaster or money, he could have a good idea.

"We haven't heard their pitch," said Jeff Valdez, chairman-CEO of year-old English-language cable channel SiTV. "We'd listen to it."

"[Latin Hip Hop awards] could be very hot," said Victor Arroyo, director of promotions at Omnicom Group's Dieste Harmel & Partners, Dallas, a leading Hispanic agency. "It's a very crossover market."


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